Co-Founder and Director
Paige lives and breathes the creed of service and self-empowerment that she teaches. A native New Yorker, graduate of New York University, and former Wall Street consultant, Paige has been teaching yoga for over a decade in the dynamic Baptiste, AcroYoga, and Jivamukti methods. As a Senior Baptiste and AcroYoga Teacher, Paige teaches in Yoga Journal Conferences across the United States, and is a featured presenter at the Evolution Asia Yoga Conference, the Barcelona Yoga Conference, the AcroYoga Festival, the Baptiste Power Flow Immersion, and the Yoga Teacher Telesummit.
Paige’s incisive skills as a businesswoman, spiritual activist, and yogini inspired her work with the Africa Yoga Project organization. In 2007, Paige moved to Africa and co-founded the AYP organization, a movement that empowers the youth and women of Kenya to learn, contribute, and change their lives through the transformative power of yoga. With the support of Baron Baptiste and his community, the AYP organization facilitated the first yoga teacher training in Kenya and now employs local youth to teach full-time in their own communities. AYP programs offer free classes to over 3,000 students per week, simultaneously building schools and funding education, critical operations, and environmental endeavors.
Since 2007, Paige has partnered with leaders in politics, philanthropy, design, and entertainment to broaden the AYP organization’s empowering reach. Whether working alongside Donna Karan’s Urban Zen Foundation, Christy Turlington, or Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Initiative, Paige creates unique opportunities for community involvement and transformation. At home in Nairobi or reaching students around the world, Paige’s dedication to positive global change is infectious and inspiring.
Social Media Advisor
Billy Sadia believes in service to create and avail new and greater possibilities to everyone anytime. He lives by the philosophy that connection is the source of strength and possibilities.
Born and raised in Kibera, one of the largest slums in Africa, he currently works with Africa Yoga Project. At Africa Yoga Project, he leads a team of yoga teachers to use the transformative power of yoga to empower communities and change lives in the slums of Nairobi. He and his team reach 5,000 people a week through their 250 free community yoga classes.
In addition, Billy was a professional dancer, dance teacher and choreographer for the past 8 years with the Sarakasi Trust, a performing arts development organization working toward building capacity in the performing arts sector of Kenya.
Billy gained experience mentoring kids and teenagers from different populations during his time with this organization.
Billy has completed level 1 and level 2 teacher trainings with the Baptiste Power Yoga Institute and is in the process of receiving his certification. This experience and work with Africa Yoga Project has changed his approach to service. He has a sole intention of preaching the option of sharing without necessarily giving.
A nativeof Louisiana and graduate of Louisiana State University, Kelly has built a yoga community in her small town of Morgan City. Her teachings follow the methodology of Baron Baptiste. She has completed Level 1 and Level 2 Baptiste trainings and is in the process of getting Baptiste certified. In addition, Kelly is the Community Relations Coordinator for Africa Yoga Project. Her background is in the communications field where she worked as a public relations professional for 2 years in Denver, Colorado, at Freemen Wall Aiello. Here she was the team lead for 12 clients landing them in media publications such as Time Magazine, U.S. News, Financial Times, Rocky Mountain News, Denver Post and on local television stations. She also was a successful real estate agent in Denver selling over $2.8 million worth of real estate a year. In 2010, she decided to leave the corporate world and began to teach yoga full-time and travel. This led Kelly to her true passion of being of service to her community and globally through the power of Yoga.
Eliam Wanjiku (Wanji)
Wanji is the brand manager for Africa Yoga Project. Before this, she was the studio manager for the AYP Shine Center, our community wellness and yoga center in Nairboi, Kenya, and Mentor Program Coordinator in Kenya connecting the mentees and mentors to create consistent and successful communication.
She has been with AYP since her first class in December of 2009. In that first class, she made up her mind that yoga was the thing she wanted to do in her life. In 2011, she attended Baron Baptiste's leadership workshop and since then has been teaching in her community and is now teaching in the AYP Shine Center. Wanji is currently at Kenya Institute of Management getting a degree in Business Management. She has also received a certification in computer skills.
Wanji is leading change by demonstrating the importance of yoga to women with HIV/AIDS and encouraging former criminals to lead a more positive life. She believes when we come together to practice yoga it inspires us to share ideas and release all the stress in our lives.
Finance and Administration coordinator
Tabitha has worked as the Finance and Administration Manager for the Africa Yoga Project organization since March 2011. Her duties include handling all financial transactions, volunteer project management and coordination, and execution of mentor calls with the Africa Yoga Project teachers. Tabitha has been involved with the Africa Yoga Project organization since its beginning in 2007, when she was working for Sarakasi Trust. She likes the project’s vision and community outreach—especially in building schools. "AYP employs teachers and empowers the youth," Tabitha says. "And, since I am working for Africa Yoga Project I do more for my physical and mental fitness in learning Yoga."
Mentor Program Coordinator
Bryant is the Mentor Coordinator for AYP creating safe and adequate communication between the mentors and the teachers. He coordinates the scheduling of skype sessions and oversees that the AYP certification process in Kenya. Bryant is also an AYP teacher leading outreach classes and teaching in the AYP Shine Center. He has been teaching since 2008 and went through Baron's Level 1 training in 2009. He is on his way to becoming a certified AYP Baptiste teacher. Yoga inspired him to serve his community by engaging in volunteer programs. He feels connected to everyone in the world through yoga. He said yoga has helped him overcome a lot of negative issues like robbery and drugs. He is a leader in his community by sharing his past and how he has overcome it through yoga.
Angie first discovered yoga in 2007 while pursuing her Bachelor's degree in Seattle Washington. On her mat, she found strength and inspiration that revealed a desire to serve. After graduating from the University of Washington in 2010 and becoming 200 RYT certified, Angie packed her backpack, followed her heart, and moved to Africa to work as a volunteer coordinator and yoga teacher for a children’s home in the mountains of Kenya. Angie was introduced to Africa Yoga Project and it's Co-Founder and Director, Paige Elenson. She immediately was intrigued and began taking a 2 hour bus ride into Nairobi to practice with the AYP community. Through this, the mission of AYP made it’s way into her heart and life and she knew someday she would become a part of it.
Angie sees true value in active service and believes in the transformative power of yoga. As Programs Coordinator for Africa Yoga Project, Angie leads individuals through an experience that cultivates leadership, builds community, raises funds and elevates awareness. She provides guidance and support to all participants who join the AYP Ambassador and Seva Safari Programs.
Graphic Designer and Brand Coordinator
Erin lives in Whistler, BC, Canada, where she is a certified Baptiste Power Yoga teacher at her studio, White Gold Yoga. It was at her Level 2 program with Baron Baptiste that she met Moses and Catherine, two teachers in training from Africa Yoga Project. Life changed for her in that moment. Ever since September 2010 she has been raising funds for AYP and has since joined the team contributing her graphic design and marketing skills.
Erin has been a graphic designer for over 17 years working as both designer and project manager at firms and independently. She has worked as the lead in-house designer for the successful Vancouver 2010 Olympic Bid and was responsible for the design and production of the Bid Book.
After having two children and being bitten by the love of yoga, Erin decided to change her career path and jumped in to the yoga world with both feet. Combining her love of yoga, empowerment, contribution and graphic design is a dream come true.
Joann (Joni) started screen printing tee shirts in 1969 with images of Rock and Roll stars, and popular logos. By 1974 their business grew; not only screen printing tee shirts , but actually producing garments from the yarn up.
The company became known as Plymouth Mills, Inc. Plymouth grew to a become one of the largest producers of imprinted sportswear on the east coast selling Walmart, Target, and thousands of stores across the United States. In 1996, Plymouth was purchased by a large public company. Both Alan and Joni worked for the new entity and then retired in 1998.
In retirement Joni has moved on to utilize her talents to create a large log sanctuary in Woodstock, N.Y. It is called "Logstock of Woodstock". Here, Joni and her partner, Rob Ramirez hold benefits with music and food for a variety of local causes. Joni serves on the board of AYP and helps orchestrate domestic transactions.